The Clicky Jaw & Physio


At Flex, we have physiotherapists who are skilled in assessing and treating issues around the jaw. 

One of the frequent issues reported by clients is that they:

  • Have a jaw that clicks when they use their mouth, and this click causes them pain or concern.
  • Used to have a click but now they report that they feel that one side of the jaw is stuck.

Many people have a benign click – which essentially means that the clicks exists with no pain, or limited mouth opening, and is not something that requires a physiotherapy assessment. 

When the jaw joint (Temporomandibular Joint *– or as we shorten it to TMJ) is not functioning properly, clients report that it is very distressing, and can be very painful.

  • Anatomy showing the bones of the TMJ. Ignore all the fancy names of the muscles (unless you are particularly interesting in these)

TMJ-blog-5112019-Flex-page-001.jpg#asset

Clicking jaw is most commonly due to tension in muscles around the TMJ causing compression through the joint. This CAN lead to the normally controlled movement of the disc on the jaw bone becoming disjointed – hence the click and in some cases the disc displaces causing a lock of that TMJ.

While this might all sound quite scary, in our experience, the sooner you get onto seeing a physiotherapist to get some stretching and techniques to relax the muscles – in order to “release” the lock, the better.

Many clients only need 1-2 sessions to release their jaw.

Both Jeannie Burnett & Sarah Clarke have experience assessing and treating issues surrounding the jaw. It can be trickier the longer you leave a locked or painful jaw - so give Flex a call on 8361 3355 to make an appointment. 

Interestingly, often tension in the jaw muscles can contribute to headaches… but more on that in the next blog.